What is SAMR?

What is SAMR?

Click the link above to learn about what SAMR is.

Duckworth, S. (2015, April 02). New #sketchnote: The SAMR Model Thx @edappadvice for the great idea! #gafesummit @dougpete @mraspinall #edtech pic.twitter.com/EzGbGN48u8. Retrieved October 04, 2020, from https://twitter.com/sylviaduckworth/status/583777293366988801?lang=en

Oxnevad, S., Susan Oxnevadhttp://d97cooltools.blogspot.com/Susan Oxnevad is an educator, Educator, S., & Here, P. (2013, August 16). The SAMR Ladder Through the Lens of 21st Century Skills. Retrieved October 04, 2020, from https://www.gettingsmart.com/2013/07/the-samr-ladder-through-the-lens-of-21st-century-skills/

Ruben R. Puentedura’s Weblog. (n.d.). Retrieved October 04, 2020, from http://www.hippasus.com/rrpweblog/

8 thoughts on “What is SAMR?

  1. HI Michelle- I really appreciated your presentation and explanation of the SAMR model. While it has been around for awhile it still seems relevant because there are still such varied uses of technology in school even in the era of COVID-19. It seems that a lot of the programs still focus on the substitution level. Teachers are learning new technologies but based on old pedagogies so thinking about how to replicate lessons online. In the new times teachers are focusing on augmentation.

    What do you think it will take for education to redefinition? I hope that the new realities help teachers and educators revision the ways that we interact with technology. I am concerned that equitable access with get in the way so it will become complicated to think about this higher level of technology usage. Thoughts?


    1. K:
      If our teacher prep programs don’t get with the times, we will never make headway in the concept of full integration beyond the second and third levels of digital divide. I think the biggest issue is that we are evolving faster than our antiquated higher education systems can evolve. Our alternative programs even have a hard time keeping up. I wrote curriculum recently for a state-wide alt licence program. Of course when I sold it to them, I had to relinquish my rights to it. I was a little concerned when they began to dismantle the pieces that required the students to interact and experiment with learning technologies and platforms and was replaced by pedagogy principles which were NOT connected to use of learning technology (I was pushing the PTAC model). But, I understand. It’s that piece that makes the curriculum “just too much.” Something’s gotta give. I’m looking forward to the day that Harry Wong is the something that’s gotta give.

      1. Hi Michelle and Kirsten,

        Thanks for your explanation about SAMR. I have not heard that acronym before, but have seen similar descriptions to the various levels of implementation of technology into education. Both you and Kirsten mentioned the issue of education focusing on the use of technology for substitution and this is something which has been frustrating me significantly over the past few years with my work with VR. Whenever I try to present my work with 360 Degree Videos and VR, people always assume that it is a way to replace simulation at a cheaper cost. This is a completely wrong approach. Simulation is beneficial for applied learning outcomes, but 360 Degree Videos do not allow the ability to engage applied learning even though it does engage in the experiential learning process. What I have found is that it actually enhances future applied learning when used prior to simulator or real-world exercises. 360 Degree Videos provide an introductory step which was never really possible before. When I try to explain this aspect, I usually get a funny look because most people look at technology from the standpoint of how we can improve upon what do what we do now and make it cheaper and faster. However, technology is wonderful because it can allow us to do things we never were able to do before. We just have to break our old ways of thinking and look at them from a new perspective.

  2. Hi Michelle,

    I really liked your description of SAMR. I especially liked the examples of google earth and how technology is used in each of the levels. I think we are currently seeing a lot of teachers just in substitution mode, but I am also finding that the students are taking it a step beyond and actually teaching the teachers how to use the technology to go deeper, such as the model suggests. The redefinition stage seems a lot like disruptive technology, where technology is opened up to wider audiences and for different purposes. The pictures you used were very useful in helping to understand the model of SAMR. Thanks for a very informative vlog post!


  3. Michelle,

    I appreciate the information on substitution, augmentation, modification, and redefinition (SAMR). The pictures help define substitution and augmentation with technology improvements as well as modification and redefinition of the use of technology for creating new tasks. I like the display of the SAMR model that goes into the step process from beginning technology approach to a more advanced process. I am not familiar with google earth, but you outlined the functions very well and the stages that SAMR works through. Thank you for the information.

    Crystal Chavez-Sambrano

  4. Michelle,

    I throughly enjoyed your presentation and blown away from the SAMR ladder. At the first look, I thought that it was just a simple format of Bloom’s but with your explanation and looking at the description, SMAR focuses on the digital format or the incorporation of technology into education.

    The idea of substitution reminds me of what some of my colleagues are doing within their virtual classroom, where they are just using the computers to a placeholder to handouts. Many of these teachers are not using the technology to benefit and further the students’ understanding of the ideas and concepts.

    After watching your video, I have to reflect on my teaching and my usage of technology within my classroom.

    Thank you for the helpful information,

  5. Michelle,
    Thank you for sharing your vlog with us and for bringing up a very interesting topic, SAMR. A while ago I had the opportunity to attend a presentation from Ruben Puentedura and hearing him speak about SAMR was what helped me to better apply it to the practices and tools that my teachers were using in the classroom. While I think that most of us would agree that substitution (the S in SAMR) is not the place that we want our teachers to live, it’s also pretty evident that if we want them to climb the ladder, they have to start there, they just can’t stay there. One thought that I often share with my teachers is to make sure that even when they implement at the substitution portion of SAMR, are they considering the implications and applications of that tool further up the ladder? Teaching kids to use technology for educational purposes takes time, and we want to streamline, whenever possible, the operating systems, interfaces, etc. that they are using, so that we are not spending so much time reteaching access skills. While it’s true that our students are well-versed from a young age with technology in many ways, using technology for educational purposes is not always one of those areas (that’s a whole separate post). If a tool, app, website, etc., can only really be used at the substitution level, is it worth the time it takes to implement (that question is hypothetical…I am not sure I know the answer or if an answer is needed, just the thinking process)?

    SAMR is even more important now during COVID-19 related shutdowns as we think about what our students have access to in the home regarding technology and support. Not only are we looking at how we can redefine education through technology, but we just have to make sure the technology can substitute, as much as possible for the in-class experience. SAMR seemed to be something that was all over Twitter a few years ago but is not quite as present today. Whether you agree with the way it’s set up or how things are defined, one thing has been made eminently clear by the current situation–we have to have a rational, student-centered, hierarchical method to appropriate and supportive technology integration in our classrooms.

    Thank you for letting me share my thoughts!

  6. Hello Michelle,

    Your diagram on SAMR was insightful and caused me to critically reflect on how I was using technology in my classroom. Unfortunately, ever since I began teaching second grade, I have not used technology past the substitution or augmentation stage. For example, though we have technology, the students were using it to substitute a reading station during small group. Do you have any resources I could use to take technology to the redefinition stage in an early childhood setting?

    I definitely see the benefits in implementing technology in a meaningful and creative way inside the classroom. As educators, we can prepare students for a global world and their success in a technology centered society. Equally important, teachers must immerse themselves into learning new methodology.



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